8th-10th March

3 days - 3 nights

Ngong' Racecourse Waterfront

Philosophy

#AfroBubblegum

fun, fierce, fantastical, art created for the joy of it.

The theme

As both science and culture suggest, Africa has long communicated with, and been related to outer world beings, with historical myths of creation and ancient civilizations connected to celestial beings, stars and outer-realm beings.

We seek to investigate the historical understanding and relationship of Africans to outer world beings and forecast an imaginary future where Africans have reconnected with these ancient knowledge systems.

Over the course of 3 days and nights, the festival seeks to produce hopeful and joyful ways of imagining Africans and their link to the worlds around them. The question we are interested in resolving is “if Africans and outer world beings re-connected, what could we learn and what could we create?”

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2019 Lineup

Sisso is a producer behind the studio bearing the same name which has been a focal point of Dar es Salaam’s underground Singeli scene. At Africa Nouveaux he will be joined by Rehema Tajiri, one of the originators of the Singeli vocal style as well as by several Singeli dancers.

Known as the ‘Godfather of Ancestral Soul’ to many, Boddhi Satva is no stranger to traversing universes and taking those who are ready on the ride with him through his music. His strength as a producer and DJ is in the seamless mixture of various traditional and spiritual African sounds set on a bed of house music rhythms and beats.
Boddhi Satva’s musical influences stem from his childhood in the Central African Republic, collaborations with artists from across the continent of all generations and DJ residencies in places such as Qatar and on tour with Grammy-award winning producer Louie Vega.
It is this network of tastemakers such as singers Karun, Teedra Moses and Omar Lyefook among others and his wealth of experiences like performing the world over including one edition of Coke Studio Africa that create such unique and uplifting music and live performances.

So committed and involved with their journey to take African sounds to the world, this outfit names themselves after the very style that their sonic experiments and outer-world journeys creates: Bengatronics.

The trio came together in 2013 after a chance roadside meeting resulted in a jam session that journeyed through galaxies picking up and dropping guitar riffs by John ‘Kakee’ Kithiki, Benga-inspired basslines and vocals by Udulele John and smooth electronic beats by Gregg Tendwa.

Bengatronics and the wider WiBO creative collective have since been meshing Kenyan and Congolese sounds with digital influences in their live band performances, as well as curating even more talented musical acts at various festivals and journeys in Kilifi, Diani, Nairobi, Jinja and more places and spaces.

The Dagoz Gang has grown out of an intergalactic hub of art and vibes – the Dagoz bar and artist venue, which hosts several jam sessions between musicians from across the region, continent and universe, and invites anyone else in for the ride.

The group, with roots mainly in Kenya and the DRC, is made up of founder members Dave Otieno (guitar, bass & vox), Stevo Kiwinda (vox & percussions), Charlie Muthemba (guitar, bass & vox), and Fariji Napa (guitar, bass & vox) and occasionally, Senegalese drummer /percussionist, Thierry De Oliveira.

With this combination of artistic styles, signatures and influences, the Dagoz Gang’s space craft explores a different journey to and from other worlds each time.

Traversing many forms of ascension from the old orders of Classical music and instruments to new realms in Nairobi’s electronic and house music scene, DJ Vidza is an outer world being to keep an eye and an ear out for.

She has been crafting and perfecting her signature hard-hitting tribal and African beats since 2015, already having taken crowds for the ride at Earthdance Nairobi and as a guest DJ on Homeboyz Radio’s groundbreaking house music show, Caffé Mocha.

Now comes the rising star’s debut on the Africa Nouveau stage where we’ll be ready to reach new levels and heights with DJ Vidza.

From the shores of a lake known to be a meeting place of outer world beings and alchemists, Suraj is a trailblazing DJ/producer well on his way to cementing his beacon status in the Kenyan, African and worldwide electronic music spheres.

Kisumu-born and Nairobi-based, Suraj has surrounded himself from a young age with a range of music from hip-hop to EDM to Afro-house and some traditional Luo music and the influences reflect in his remixes as well as his own compositions.

Ever the fan of collaborating with other talented musicians, in 2016 Suraj released a remix together with producer, Riot Stereo called ‘Abiro’, notably played at the Tomorrowland Festival 2018 by South African DJ Black Coffee.

You may have seen him on world stages such as Boiler Room Nairobi or supporting others create ascension through music with Midi Minds Kenya – and now Africa Nouveau once again.

Out of rural Limpopo, South Africa, taking us all on exciting sonic and visual journeys through an unapologetic embrace of her Tsonga heritage and other African cultures comes Sho Madjozi. She is the embodiment of the outer world being pushing along a movement committed to celebrating past and present traditions.

You may have seen her energetic presence on the stages of Afropunk Johannesburg and Brooklyn or the Global Citizen Festival dressed in a traditional xibelani skirt and dancing, singing and jumping to tunes in her native Xitsonga and even Zulu and Kiswahili lyrics.

Following her feature on Okmalumkoolkat’s hit song Gqi she began to make her mark in South Africa with her single Dumi Hi Phone. East African fans in particular have been appreciating the smash hit Huku with its Kiswahili lyrics set to hard-hitting gqom beats. Her debut album Limpopo Champions League is set for release in early 2019 and with it she ascends through the Nouveau stage and beyond.

This council of otherworldly musicians combined their talent and love for their art to make up a collective of performers bigger than they had dreamed. Nairobi Horns Project hail from an alternate realm known for its cool waters and originated as a project between trumpeter Mackinlay Mutsembi, saxophonist Rabai Mokua and trombonist player Victor Kinama.

Five additional band members and several music festivals and other live performances later –including opening for late jazz legend Hugh Masekela at the 2016 Safaricom International Jazz Festival – NHP are enjoying success and acclaim with their blend of jazz, African rhythms and electronic music.

After performing at the Standard Bank Joy of Jazz in Johannesburg in 2018 and in anticipation of their second studio album Africa Nouveau is pleased to host this band of talented and unique musicians.

This crew of otherworldly funkmasters from many corners of many dimensions combine to form what is growing into an alternative orchestra of jazz, reggae, afro-funk and soul.

Kaya Collective mixes up their intergalactic sonic influences on percussion, horns, guitars and booming vocals all stirred together and borne out of improvisation and jam sessions. The 7 talented musicians, a combination of instrumentalists, vocalists and producers, return to the Nouveau stage but have also played at events such as Thursday Night Live and released a studio album, Nairbeat.

A gifted artist who has moved through many different forms, realms and lives in a seemingly short time, Karun is quickly making her unique creative mark in Kenya and the world. Cutting her teeth as the first lady of one of Nairobi’s most prolific band of young musicians, Camp Mulla, she has since leapt out on her own to learn, create and grow into her true form.

The rise of the #NuNairobi creative movement to outer worlds and new heights is also a part of Karun’s work and creativity, having collaborated with the likes of Boddhi Satva, Blinky Bill, Ukweli and more. She is also part of creative collective Cosmic Homies

Her melodic and soulful experimental R&B records like ‘Roses’, a feature with Ukweli and ‘Make Believe’ featuring Blinky Bill are prime to take you on a smooth ascension on the Nouveau stage.

Three agents of outer-world arts combine their talents in theatre, fashion, poetry and music to form the uber-cool H_art the Band.

The trio made up of Mordecai, Wachira and self-taught guitarist Kenneth never fail to inspire joy and good vibrations with their upbeat hits delivered with an unbending sense of humour and with futuristic style. Enjoying plenty of radio play and digital streams for their hits such as ‘Uliza Kiatu’ and ‘Nikikutazama’ has opened the band up to growing acclaim all over the country, the region and the continent.

The three Sauti Academy alumni, slam poetry champions and award-winning musicians continue to inspire people of all ages and creeds with their do-it-yourself work ethic and enthusiasm for casing their dreams.

Franck Biyong has long lived as a physical and musical nomad from both the future and the past. Growing up in Gabon, Nigeria and Ivory Coast he went on to learn and experiment with music in the UK, France, Cameroon and beyond, releasing 13 studio albums in the process – one each year from 2006 to the present.

Franck is a master guitarist inspired by the greats of jazz and rock ‘n roll as well as having formed bands of percussionists, horn sections, bassists and backing vocalists and even written an opera. He has been hailed as a front-runner in the growth of afrobeats and even the creator of the Afroelectric sound.

His tireless work to celebrate traditional West African and Caribbean sounds and melodies while modernizing them in his own style is what will surely transport us all to several worlds at the Nouveau stage this March.

The transcendental breakdancer, dramatic performer and music producer Faizal Ddaba Mostrixx is an agent of ascension through the elevation of culture in Uganda and beyond. Having been a performer since childhood, he currently performs both solo and with a dance crew as well as teaching dance at a school and a dance center – all to bring people together in creating change and preserve and develop African heritage through movement.

His music production naturally flows in the same vein using traditional Ugandan melodies, rhythms and instruments combined with electronic instruments to create his own style and story, often called world tribal electronic music.

Experience this multi-faceted artist in all his forms at Nouveau 2019.

Africa Nouveau is proud to host an outer world being and old friend from across the continent. Cortega is no stranger to bringing the fire to dancefloors all over the world constantly picking up inspiration from influences all over Africa and beyond.
An originator of Electrafrique, a pan-African house music events series from Dakar to New York to Nairobi and everywhere in between, Cortega and his friends and collaborators such as DJ Black Coffee and Boddhi Satva among others frequently take revelers on a sonic journey around Africa.
You may have seen him traverse lands and waters from Miami’s Winter Music Conference to previous Africa Nouveau festivals and more – no doubt drawing on some good fortune from Mami Wata.

Dynamic, electrifying and committed to bringing the best and most positive vibes to everyone who sees and hears them, Cheif & the Marshalls are one of the country and the region’s best young bands.
The outfit is made up of a collective of out-of-this-world performers and beings i.e. Lion Chief Muriuki on lead vocals and guitar, Empress Lusiche Imbogo on bass, Bryant Ouma on the drum throne and roots-and-culture man Gugo Brian on percussion.
In a short time they have taken their rhythmic and embellished sound with reggae roots to such stages as Nyege Nyege Festival, Kilifi New Year’s Festival and Concours D’Elegance to name a few. Their live energy and positive, socially conscious voice is set to be amplified and encourage all when they land at Nouveau very soon.

At our upcoming celebration of Africans and outer-world beings a key goal is to strengthen the bond between modern Africans and their true selves, expressed in individual ways. For this we’ve enlisted the help of outer world beings already on this mission and Buruntuma, already hailed as a modern-day Griot travelling the continent and the world spreading energy through his music, is one such agent.
Elements of traditional music from his native Guinea Bissau, afro-house and electronic beats and flavours from Portugal’s barrios combine to tell positive and uplifting stories of his African roots. Buruntuma’s DJ sets light up dancefloors all over Portugal, France, Germany and Angola among other realms and he’s now set to land at Nouveau to celebrate a rich and diverse heritage with all.

An intergalactic and intercultural powerhouse will pay a visit to our universe in the form of the Pan-African creative collective known as Batuk. Made up of vocalist Manteiga and established electronic music producer Spoek Mathambo, the group delivers vibrant and culturally-rich music, visuals and live performances – performances which have seen them bring audiences to ascension in over 20 countries just this past year.
Their latest release, titled Kasi Royalty is their sophomore album and explores their roots in kwaito, Afro-house, soul and rap to fresh heights and different realms. You may have seen coverage on their unique style in publications such as i-D Magazine, BBC, CNN, OkayAfrica and more – or you can come and experience their outer-world performance for yourself at Africa Nouveau.

This avant-garde multi-disciplinary artist, musician and space-shift pilot is one more visitor and agent of ascension at Africa Nouveau.

You may have spotted him in Dakar’s nights, Casamance’s fields or further afield blending sonic experiments of hip-hop, electronic music and local sounds and music of Senegal. So far he has transported people to several galaxies playing live at Afropunk Dakar, Nyege Nyege Festival in Uganda, Transmusicales Festival in France among other stages.

His collaborations are even known to transcend the musical sphere, notably his work with Senegalese fashion designer Selly Raby Kane on the soundtrack to her 2014 collection fashion show, titled Alien Cartoon. The music and concept extended beyond the show to become Ibaaku’s first album, a cult record of the same name as well as a concept tour all across the intergalactic hotspots of Afrika in 2018.

Returning to the Nouveau stage once again, Basthma is a DJ/producer whose upbringing in Nairobi’s Eastlands, love for a range of sounds and beats and masked alter-ego (his plane/car is what he calls it, and he’s the pilot) all combine into an eclectic artist.
Delivering tracks filled with emotion, rhythm and basslines to connect with his audience are the most important things to this young artist and his influences range from the likes of Matt Zo and Mr. Cramack to homegrown K-South.
He’s gearing up to take all of us on an adventure of nu bounce and future bass when he makes contact from outer worlds very soon.

VIDEOS

Africa Nouveau 2018